The fire. The burn. The Phoenix
Why I became a Yoga teacher / trainer and studio owner…
A long, long time ago, in a little city called Perth… I was diagnosed with Endometriosis (after more than 15 years of misdiagnosis!). This shed some light on to why I had been suffering for YEAAAARRRSSS with the most horrific ‘period pain’.
This diagnosis combined with one of my super powers ‘SUPERNERD', led me to hours of research to help manage the pain and trying anything to help reduce flare-ups. I attended seminars and conferences on women's health and learnt a lot about hormones/nutrition/physical and mental health.
The Endo pain was at times debilitating. I mean, curled in a ball on the floor, fading in and out of consciousness, from such extreme levels of agony. There were multiple trips to the ER, because I could have sworn there was an alien trying to claw its way out of me. However, this led to the doctor’s telling me I was only coming in for the morphine hit… I had several surgeries to remove, ablate and separate organs that had ‘grown’ together, which left me more and more stressed and constantly recovering from new incisions.
Then when waking from surgery one day, the surgeon told me that both fallopian tubes were completely blocked and that conceiving naturally was not going to be possible.
Crushed by the weight of my own chest, trying to piece together the words that were just delivered. I could not comprehend. How in my mid 20s, with a great balance of physical activity and healthy eating, was I being told falling pregnant was not going to be possible (naturally)!?
So, you can imagine the initial shock and disbelief when I found out several months later… that I was pregnant! Wowie did that news pick me up and deliver me onto the fluffiest of clouds where the beat of the little being inside of me was sending all the good vibes. I registered for a one-day workshop – YogaFit Prenatal, with no intentions to become a yoga teacher, but purely wanting more knowledge for my growing baby as well as more to also offer my personal training clients.
Just 4 days before the training… I woke up covered in blood. I knew what was happening in an instant and I felt my heart start to sink and the pounding beat was a type of sad I never knew existed. My memory of the absolute despair that this left me in, is very foggy. No one prepares you for the massive hole you fall into when you miscarry. Nor does it feel like you will ever be able to crawl back out.
The morning of the training I was still registered for, I woke up and was drawn to go to this course still (although I was still bleeding heavily). It only took the opening share circle “your name, fitness background, and why you are here” to set the water works show off. I began to rethink the decision to go.
During the lunch break, the trainer, Lisa Greenbaum, came to me and offered me some very kind and loving words. It was in this very genuine loving moment, that I realised I was exactly where I needed to be. Not just that day, but I had found something that spoke volumes to me. At the time I thought maybe it was me clasping for something…
But BOOM - I was signed up to the full 200-hour Yoga Teacher Training (still, having no intention to be a yoga teacher, purely for personal growth reasons)! This was the glue that really brought all my other learnings and experiences together.
It didn’t take much though, to realise how much I loved this program and how much I wanted to share with the world. So much so, that when I was encouraged to apply to become a trainer, my bendy rubber arm was twisted, and I sent my resume and video audition in within a few days! I had again activated ‘SUPERNERD’. Diving into the manuals and research ready to begin my YogaFit Apprentice training. I was so very excited to be able to have the privilege to train teachers and spread more love to this pocket of the world.
Small pause. Three things you need to know about me.
1 – I am pretty stubborn (read VERY stubborn).
2 – I am a high achiever and have high standards. Hence the ‘SUPERNERD’...
3 – I am busy. When I am not busy, I find new project or boards to sit on.
So, in order to be doing all three of these things… I was soon leading trainings all over Australia every other weekend, whilst working a 40-hour full time job (lol – more like 60) and trying to maintain my marriage and social life. Spoiler alert… I failed to achieve these things – because my candle burnt out, lickity-bloody-split.
After several years of trying to fall pregnant (see, stubborn even though the docs said I couldn’t, I tried anyway!) I had finally accepted that falling pregnant was not going to happen naturally. As a little present to myself, it was off to our first IVF appointment on my birthday.
Just like no one really prepares you for miscarriage, no one can really prepare you for the IVF train. I am sure that I am not alone here… but I was embarrassed that I ‘needed’ help to fall pregnant. The demons I battled about ‘not being woman enough’; not deserving enough… the list goes on… Then throw a bunch of hormones in there and this craziness of emotions becomes out of control: the days seem darker and I felt more and more isolated each and every blood test.
I needed a break from it all. I packed my bags and went on a solo adventure to Canada and USA.
I sat in the fire. I burned what I no longer needed. I grew from the ashes. A phoenix.
The space, the clarity, the time on my own was life changing.
Not only did I learn about how much stress I was putting on myself in my professional and personal life, I also realised some BIG decisions needed to be made if I was serious about my health and wellness.
-I quit the 9-5 job that was really tearing my heart open.
-I stopped taking the prescribed meds that were leaving me hazy & lack-lustre.
-I practiced loving myself and not turning to others to fill these holes.
-I stopped fighting upstream and all of the pieces started to fall in to place.
-I found a space in a great little location and I opened my own Yoga and Wellness hub.
Things were going great. I had rediscovered the love for myself that was now radiating from my core. My passion, my drive, my buzz… I was back, baby!! I was well and truly prepped to make 2019 crazy fantastic.
Then came the greatest news… I was pregnant! Naturally!!!!!!!!!
HOLY SHIT BALLS…. I am going to be a Mumma! 2019 had started with a bang.
Love. Studio. Pregnant.
My heart soared. I have never felt the level of joy that I did when the test was positive. So many pennies dropping. This was the path I was meant to be on. The stress was eliminated, and both my body and mind were in the healthiest state I had ever experienced.
With this level of happiness exploding out of me, the studio was building a solid membership base and I was going from strength to strength in all facets.
Then the cruellest joke.
Right now, I still do not have the words to explain how far down I fell, when I started cramping at 6 weeks. I was sent for scans and bloods and my fears were confirmed. My HCG levels were dropping. I was miscarrying. Again.
I didn’t believe it.
At least until the day when the bleeding started.
Most days I wake up and I am easily able to find three things I am grateful for. But that day (and a few after it), I found the world to be a cruel and horrible place. There was an overwhelming darkness that I could see and feel within every part of me. When I woke that morning, not only did my heart throb with a heaviness that consumed my entire chest cavity, my head was on fire, my jaw tight from clenching throughout the night, my eyes stinging from the non-stop fall of tears. Every breath I took – lumpy and requiring all the effort I had to spare. A level of effort that was tiring and so fucking hard.
From my ribs down – a mix of complete numbness and tearing pain all at the same time. Which makes no sense to my brain – the very small section of my brain that appeared to be slightly online. As for the rest of my brain, foggy and crowded with thoughts that were spinning so fast I couldn’t grasp anything. A swirl of emotions, thoughts, opinions and pain throughout my body.
This all-consuming feeling rocked my world for weeks. At this same time, I was still getting up out of bed to manage and teach classes at the studio. Not well, albeit. But I turned up. At least physically.
In all of this… you have probably forgot the point of this story. Which was – why I became a yoga teacher, trainer and studio owner.
It is to share. To bring together. To create discussion. To create a space that allows you to explore and find some time for introspection.
And having shared this, I ask a small little favour.
Please think twice before you ask people “when are you having kids!?”. You may not know their story. You may not realise how much pressure there is already. You
If you have been through something similar, please feel free to reach out to me. I am happy to listen, please know that I am not qualified to give advice, only a listening ear.
If you are suffering with depression, anxiety or need to talk to someone, please always know that you have the wonderful services available to you.
Lifeline – 13 11 14 | Beyond Blue – 1300 22 4636